Jerry "The King" Lawler is an American Professional Wrestler, illustrator, almost-politician and color commentator from Memphis, TN.Starting in 1970, Lawler wrestled for numerous promotions including the AWA and various promotions based in the Memphis area. He gained the title "King of Wrestling" after winning the Southern (Memphis) Heavyweight Championship. He worked as both a Face and Heel, and had a famous feud with Andy Kaufman. Lawler would eventually join the WWF in 1992, originally as a heel color commentator and part-time wrestler. Lawler was noted for his humorous digs at popular wrestlers and, once the Attitude Era was in full swing, his... um... appreciation of certain aspects of the female anatomy, which he gleefully called "Puppies!" at every opportunity.That Other Wiki has more information on him. Read it here.
"The King's Tropes":
Annoying Laugh: Lawler has a grating laugh as a heel. As a face, he uses his real, much more bearable laugh.
Randy Savage, and not just in the ring. In the late 1970s and early 1980s, the Poffos (Angelo, Lanny and Randy) were running International Championship Wrestling in Lexington, KY, which was an outlaw (runs in the same territorial areas as an established promotion in opposition) promotion against the Continental Wrestling Association in Memphis, TN run by Jerry Jarrett and Jerry "The King" Lawler. ICW's TV announcers would give away the real names of CWA wrestlers, issue challenges on the air, and Savage even once attacked CWA wrestler "Superstar" Bill Dundee at the CWA's gym. ICW closed in 1984, leading to the Poffos going to Memphis to actually feud with Lawler and co. Many of these dirty tricks would be recycled during the Monday Night Wars, except for the part about attacking guys at the gym.
Another interesting side note: Before Randy Savage left for WCW, he was the color commentator for the WWF. Who replaced him once Vince found out he jumped ship? Jerry Lawler. It was originally supposed to be for one night, but it ultimately turned into a full-on career.
Authority in Name Only: Only in that he has no legal authority. Jerry Lawler earned his red baron "the king" by breaking Elvis Presley's consecutive sellout record of the Memphis Midwest Colosseum. The only star that can be argued to be brighter than his in Memphis is Sputnik Monroe.
Made all the more badass by the fact that he would've beaten the Miz if Michael Cole hadn't interfered.
Three days after he had a heart attack that nearly killed him, Lawler was on Tout thanking the fans and cracking jokes.
Lawler: I've got more wires coming out of me than AT&T
Batman Gambit: Pulls off one on Michael Cole on the May 16th edition of Raw. He tells Cole that he respects Cole's Dragon-in-ChiefJack Swagger because he's a former champion and that Cole has made Swagger nothing but his sidekick. Cole's own ego results in his saying no one remembers Jack being champion and being his sidekick was the best thing to ever happen to him. Jack responds by telling Jerry "he's all yours" and walking out on Cole. The look on Jerry's face can only mean this was exactly what he'd planned to happen.
Has been creeping into his commentary as of late. During the WWE World Heavyweight Championship match on the No Way Out 2012 PPV, Jerry said the crowd was chanting let's go Sheamus when they were clearly cheering for Dolph Ziggler.
Also happened on Raw, where he stated that the previous week, he apologised to CM Punk and was then kicked in the back of the head unprovoked. While Punk did kick him, it was only after he had told Jerry to admit that he (Punk) was the best in the world (for which he has a credible case, having held the WWE Championship for 9 months and counting, putting on match after stellar match, and yet receives little respect for it in storyline) and Lawler simply said "I can't say that", and tried to shove past him. Punk's action was dickish, yes, but it was made abundantly clear he would not tolerate such blatant disrespect.
Carpet of Virility: He has a very hairy chest torso and at one point figured himself a heartthrob. Well, if reports of his coworkers are to believe he never stopped being hairy or thinking himself a heartthrob.
The Cast Show Off: Lawler is a decent cartoonist, which was put into an angle with him and the Ultimate Warrior in the mid-90's when Warrior's comic series came out. He also did the illustrations for Mick Foley's WWE Christmas-themed children's book.
Costume Porn: Even as a heel commentator, Lawler would dress up in gaudy royal looking attire. When he turned face, he started to dress like a normal person.
Crouching Moron, Hidden Badass: Most fans today would know Lawler as the laid-back, mammary-obsessed commentator and only-occasional wrestler. What most fans don't realize is that he holds the world record for most championship reigns in a career.note This is due to the fact that he usually owned the promotions (The Continental Wrestling Association and the United States Wrestling Association).
Dirty Coward: As a heel in his wrestling matches. He even hid under the ring during the 1993 Royal Rumble while not technically eliminated yet, just to wait it out so he could jump in later.
Deeply entrenched in the heel role at the time and trolling Jim Ross at every turn, Lawler still didn't think too highly of Tazz bullying JR and finally socked him out before Tazz could punch out JR. After that, Jerry would wobble between face and heel for a good long while before settling on face.
Throughout his run as the pro-heel commentator, he would ruthlessly mock the good guys and sometimes condone the most despicable acts by the heels. He was arguably at the height of this persona in 1998 and 1999, but broke character during two pay-per-view events when two wrestlers he regularly mocked with mean-spirited commentary were involved in horrible accidents: Mankind being thrown through an announcers' table from the top of a 16-foot cage and knocked unconscious; and Owen Hart suffering a fatal injury after a ring stunt gone wrong. In the latter instance, Lawler (just minutes after making Owen Hart jokes) somberly announced that it didn't look good for Hart.
Conversely, when Lawler suffered his legit heart attack during a live broadcast of Raw, Cole broke away from his heel-leaning, trolling-of-Lawler persona to pray for a speedy recovery.
The Dudley Boys powerbombed Terri Runnels through a table. Even Lawler, who was a heel at the time, was disgusted by this. Mind you, this is the same heel commentator who would defend nearly anything other heels did.
When it comes to any weapon to any match, Lawler DOES DRAW THE LINE when it’s something that can cause amputation of any limb and/or can kill. This was seen during the 1998 Royal Rumble when he was appalled when Chainsaw Charlie brought, what else… a chainsaw.
He was also among the wrestlers who was disgusted by the actions of the New Age Outlaws when they threw a dumpster containing Mick Foley and Terry Funk over the ramp. Note… this is coming from the same guy who gave Scott Putski, who suffered a dislocated knee, a hard time after Lawler’s son, Brian, fought him. However, pushing a dumpster off the entrance ramp and onto to the concrete floor with people inside, like Foley and Funk, he was upset about it.
In spite of his love of puppies, King was disturbed by the beating Lita put on Trish Stratus at New Years Revolution. Not just for heel Trish's sake but for Lita's own when he thought she might do as much damage to herself. He also didn't like to see Beth Phoenix go to town on Candice Michelle.
Exact Words: Used after he grabs Michael Cole by the tie and uses it to slam him head first into the side of the "Cole Mine" over and over again. When Swagger tries to invoke the protection the "GM" gave Cole from Jerry, Jerry replies that he didn't lay a hand on Cole. He only touched his tie.
Expy: Of his trainer, Jackie Fargo, as Lawler took a lot of mannerisms, particularly his big comeback, from Fargo.
Fanboy: Of Vince McMahon during the Attitude Era. Lampshaded by Jim Ross on numerous occasions. What makes this interesting is that Jerry Lawler was the first face that Vince ever feuded with as a heel, though it happened in USWA and not WWE, and they were on opposite sides during commentary with Vince being the face and Lawler being the heel.
Finishing Move: The Piledriver and the Diving Fist Drop, currently he only uses the Fist Drop because the Piledriver is too dangerous.
Flanderization: Being more known for screeching "Puppies!" at every possible moment than he is for his decades in the wrestling business and, in particular, his legendary status in Memphis, TN.
Gondor Calls for Aid: For his "Kiss My Feet" Match with Michael Cole, Jerry suspected that Cole would try something, so he called for the help of Eve Torres, Jim Ross, and even Bret "The Hitman" Hart to make sure Cole got payback for all the crap Cole put all of them (except Hart, who was just there because he really hates Cole anyway) through for months in the form of a Humiliation Conga.
Despite his current face leaning commentary style on WWE Raw and live pay-per-view events, Lawler always reverts to his classic heel-style commentary for the WWE's video game releases, playing the antagonizer to whomever is the face commentator (usually Jim Ross or Michael Cole), and when he and another lead commentator are asked to re-create (word-for-word) the commentary for classic WWE matches. For instance, in WWE 2K14, Hulk Hogan vs. King Kong Bundy in a steel cage at WrestleMania 2, Lawler read the heelish Jesse Ventura's commentary's lines while Ross took on Lord Alfred Hayes' commentary.
Hoist by His Own Petard: Bret Hart defeated Lawler in a "Kiss My Foot" match at King of the Ring 1995. After the match, Bret shoved Lawler's smelly foot in Lawler's own mouth. In the month or so leading up to the match, Lawler was in taped vignettes doing things like walking barefoot through a stable and other activities to "prepare" his foot for the match. Keeping that in mind, the match finale was that much more over the top. This led to Glen "Kane" Jacobs getting his first shot in WWE as Lawler's evil dentist, Dr. Isaac Yankem, DDS.
How Much More Can He Take: His sixty minute time limit draw against Harley Race was famous enough to get referenced on WWE television.
Ironic Echo: Of the unintentional kind. An old early-90s promo for the Royal Rumble involved Jerry dying of a heart attack and being involved in a Battle Royal in Heaven with various other "Kings", such as King Arthur and Elvis Presley. Flash forward to September 2012... Thankfully, got better.
Moral Dissonance: Has been creeping into his commentary. One particular recent and jarring example involves how WWE World Heavyweight Champion Sheamus stealing Alberto Del Rio's car and bringing it back soiled all the way to hell is justified as him just "borrowing" it for a "joyride", whereas WWE Champion CM Punk attacking The Rock during a run-in after Rock had told him earlier that night that he had a gifted shot at his title months in advance means Punk "still needs to earn respect" and "has turned his back on the WWE Universe". Becomes even more jarring when you realize that when Del Rio first became #1 contender to Sheamus's championship, Sheamus promptly clubbed him from behind on the stage within a minute — and Lawler later condemned not the original deed, but Del Rio doing the same to Sheamus as payback. Of course, it's worth noting that Lawler's commentary has always contained Double Standard bias; it's just more glaring seeing him do it as a watered-down Face in the modern-day Be a Star PG era.
Older Than He Looks: He's aged pretty well. He even put on some pretty decent wrestling matches at the very end of his WWE in-ring career. He was still climbing that top rope even in his 60's.
Only Sane Man: With Michael Cole as his broadcast commentary partner.
Power Stable: Lawler's Army, in Memphis, which included "Dr. D" David Schultznote Yes, the same guy who infamously slapped 20/20's John Stossel, the Mongolian Stomper, Porkchop Cash and Stan Fraziernote WWE's Uncle Elmer.
Reality Ensues: On September 10, 2012, Lawler had an absolutely, 100% real heart attack on a live airing of Monday Night Raw. As ringside medics attended to him, there was a very legitimate concern that he would die that night. Michael Cole, despite being a heel and having on-and-off feuds with Lawler at the time, was visibly distraught and didn't even bother to call at least one match after the incident. If one looked at the commentary area at ringside, Cole could be seen sitting alone with his head in his hands◊, likely doing anything he could to not break down into tears at the thought of his partner on commentary and real-life friend passing away right in front of him.
(in WWE): Modest Mussorgsky's "The Bogatyr Gates (in the Capital in Kiev)" (from his famous piano suite Pictures At An Exhibition. It's the same music Harley Race and Haku used during their runs as the "King of the WWF.")
(in ECW in 1997): Roger Miller's "King of the Road" and Marc Cohn's "Walking in Memphis"
Royals Who Actually Do Something: He won more championships than anyone else in the WWF (though most of them are not recognized by WWE) and sold out a long string of shows than anyone else in his city. And he does commentary. He'd like to train some younger wrestlers too.
Screw This, I'm Outta Here!: Jerry quit the WWE in early 2001 after his then wife was fired. He was replaced by Paul Heyman who was even more irritating as a heel commentator than Lawler was. Jerry soon divorced his wife and replaced Heyman after Paul was "fired" after the Invasion concluded.
Jerry is renowned for his punches, not because they're deadly, but because they look really good. Early in Memphis he was fond of fireballs.
In general, he favors the piledriver and a diving fist drop to end matches. Less of the former once Vince decided to ban all non-Tombstone versions of the piledriver but he has used it since then a few times.
Stealth Insult: When Michael Cole(!) wished Jim Ross would get well soon and that he wants him back on commentary(!!!), Jerry Lawler added, "I really want you back."
Stealth Pun: When Mick Foley entered the 2012 Royal Rumble, Jerry said that it wasn't a Cheap Pop but a real pop. Figured it out yet?
Coca-Cola, in Real Life. An episode of WWE Confidential had him reveal his extensive collection of Coca-Cola merchandise. Also Fried Chicken. He bemoaned in an interview post heart attack that aside from it being unsafe for him to wrestle at present, his biggest complaint about his health was that he could no longer eat fried chicken due to the risk it poses to his heart. Although this didn't stop him from stuffing his face with it on the February 25th, 2013 edition of Raw.
As it turned out, his heart attack was not due to a blocked artery, but was instead a sudden unexplained arrest. He has been medically cleared to continue wrestling, and still works indie shows that don't conflict with his WWE schedule (he is only under contract to appear on Raw and PPV events).